CORPORATE LIABILITY UNDER MALAYSIAN OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH LEGISLATION

  • Kamal Halili Hassan

Abstract

Although the underlying philosophy of the Malaysian Occupational Safety and Health Act
1994 has always been self-regulatory, enforcement of the Act has relied on prosecution. The
Act provides for several forms of sanctions– imprisonment and fines –to punish wrongdoers,
who are mainly corporate bodies. Scores of corporate entities have been prosecuted since the
promulgation of the Act in 1994; the overwhelming majority of these entities charged under
the Act pleaded guilty and paid fines. This study found that corporate entities have generally
been willing to pay fines rather than undergo criminal trials under the Act. Cases from the
2006-2013period prove the consistency of such pattern. The reasons for paying fines rather
than undergoing criminal trial include the following, among others: the fines are comparatively
low, the burden of proof is on the accused (in practice), the intensity and time factor of a
full trial is onerous and the company's reputation is at risk. In the case of workplace-related
death and its effect on corporations, the laws of the United Kingdom are analysed. This study
adopted a qualitative method that mainly relied on descriptive and analytical examinations of
statutory provisions and case law.
Keywords: Malaysia; OSHA 1994; Corporate Liability; Prosecution; Safety and Health.

Published
2017-11-30
How to Cite
Hassan, K. H. (2017). CORPORATE LIABILITY UNDER MALAYSIAN OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH LEGISLATION. International Journal of Business and Society, 16(2). https://doi.org/10.33736/ijbs.569.2015